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Maria Jimenez

Longtime immigration reform activist Maria Jimenez is no longer with us.  She was a pioneer in our community.  A tireless leader. A true legend.  One of a kind.  The real deal.

Here is from the Chron story on Maria’s passing:

Longtime Houston civil rights activist Maria Jimenez has died after a long cancer battle, her family announced Wednesday. She was 70 years old.

And this:

Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo said she was devastated by news of her passing.

“She was a compassionate and tireless leader, fighting for the most vulnerable, especially immigrants,” Hidalgo said. “She was a mentor to me and one of the first people to support me in running for County Judge. Rest in power.”

I first encountered Maria over 46 years ago when she, in her early 20s, ran as a candidate for state representative in 1974 for the old District 87 seat under the La Raza Unida Party.  Ben Reyes was the incumbent and won.

She then grew into the exceptional leader she was over the past few decades.

It is my hope that our leadership will look into honoring her legacy and accomplishments by naming a park, a school or a public building after her.  Very deserving. A remarkable individual for sure.

This infuriates me.  This headline from the Chron’s website:

White House COVID task force issues strong warnings for Texans over 65

Here is from the story:

The latest White House report says new hospital admissions in Texas are “beginning to peak” and warns that those over 65 or with significant health conditions should not enter any indoor spaces where people may not be wearing masks. They should also have groceries and medications delivered, the report says.

Those under 40, the report says, “need to assume you became infected during the Thanksgiving period if you gathered beyond your immediate household.”

Here is the story: White House COVID task force issues strong warnings for Texans over 65 – HoustonChronicle.com.

Pitiful federal and state leadership on fighting COVID-19.

The Mayor of Austin certainly let his city down.  Selfish.  Selfish. Selfish.

You also know who took a beating in 2020?  StubHub.  Not very many events once the pandemic arrived.  They’ve made kazillions off of our arses over the years.  I am very sure they were able to weather it out.

Rafer Johnson, the 1960 Olympic Decathlon Gold Medal Winner, left us yesterday.  He was 86.  He was born in Texas.  A civil rights activist.  Involved in the Special Olympics.  A world class athlete and great guy.  He carried and lit the flame at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles.

He was also campaigning with Sen. Robert F. Kennedy at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles when RFK was assassinated after RFK won the California Democratic Primary in June of 1968.  He helped subdue the assassin Sirhan Sirhan.  There is an audio of the assassination where the announcer mentions Rafer Johnson.  Now you know.

Th Rockets introduced some new uniforms that are Columbia blue like the Oilers.  I’m ok with that.

I still have a Columbia blue Oilers lid and a black sweatshirt with the Columbia blue derrick logo.

I wonder if the Astros are considering Columbia blue.

Darryl Kile

My old pal Bob Mann is no longer with us.  He was former Cong. Bob Krueger’s press secretary and Sen. Ted Kennedy’s press secretary.  We worked together in Krueger’s run for the U.S. Senate in 1978.  He was a pro and very good at his job.  We had good times together.

Donald Trump had a reception last night at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue for members of the Republican National Committee.  Here is from a Politico story on the reception:

Many of the attendees at the Tuesday evening party appeared to be maskless, and coughs could be heard in the video.

The super spreading continues.

Seven weeks, baby.  49 days. 

I sure hope the Biden-Harris Transition plan includes sending a fumigating crew to douse the place from top to bottom at noon on January 20, 2021.

AG Bill Barr says DOJ didn’t find any fraud. I could have told them that.

I am sure you have heard that Texas GOP AG Ken Paxton says Harris County illegally created an Elections Administrator.  The Democrats on the Harris County Commissioners Court told him yesterday to shut up.

I nearly spit up my Saint Arnold when I read this part of the Chron on the matter:

Precinct 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle, a Republican, said (Commissioner Rodney) Ellis’s criticism of Paxton was unfounded. The attorney general has a duty to ensure the law is followed, he said.

“When Paxton says we didn’t follow the rules, I don’t think there is some evil intent,” Cagle said.

Paxton and following the rules is the classic oxymoron.

Commentary’s take is a dude that has the FBI looking up his arse shouldn’t be telling us in Harris County how to conduct our elections.

Just so you know, my car sounds through the Christmas holidays is local 99.1 FM, Hallmark Radio Channel 70, Holiday Traditions Channel 73, and Holly Channel 105 all on SiriusXM.  I am also carrying 6 Christmas CDs including Eydie Gorme Y Los Panchos, The Carpenters, Trans-Siberian Orchestra, The Lennon Sisters, and various artists compilations that include Feliciano, Nat King Cole, Bing Crosby, Aretha Franklin and Johnny Mathis.

Josh Reddick said adios to Astros fans here Josh Reddick says farewell to Astros fans – HoustonChronicle.com.

Former Astros/Rockies/San Luis pitcher Darryl Kile left us way to soon at age 33 in June of 2002.  He pitched for us from 1991-1997. He had a 7 to 1 no-no against the Mets at the Dome on September 8, 1993.  There were three future Hall of Famers in the game: Jeff Bagwell, Craig Biggio and Eddie Murray with the Mets.

DK was a three-time NL All Star.  Twice with us and once with San Luis.  In 1997, he won 19 games for us.  He won 20 for San Luis in 2000.

DK’s Astros number 57 has not been retired but no one has worn it since 1997.

DK was born 52 years ago today.

Pitiful Texas

The folks around Gov. Greg Abbott should be mighty proud of this frontpage story in today’s Chron.  Here is how it starts:

WASHINGTON — The White House Coronavirus Task Force says Texas is in the swing of a “full resurgence” of COVID-19 and the state’s mitigation efforts “must intensify,” while Gov. Greg Abbott and other leaders decline to take some of the steps the Trump administration is recommending.

report issued by the task force before the Thanksgiving holiday calls for Texas to significantly reduce maximum occupancy for public and private indoor spaces and to conduct weekly coronavirus testing of teachers, college students, county workers, hospital personnel and others.

“Texas continues to be in a full resurgence and mitigation efforts must intensify,” the Nov. 22 report says. “The silent community spread that precedes and continues to drive these surges can only be identified and interrupted through proactive, focused testing.”

Here is the entire story: White House report calls on Texas to ‘intensify’ COVID-19 mitigation efforts – HoustonChronicle.com.

Sigh.  Abbott gave up on us this past summer.  He doesn’t have a single leadership bone in his body.  Don’t count on him to help us get out of this mess.  Stay patient folks.  January 20, 2021 is 50 days away. Leadership and help will get here soon enough.

Donald Trump went after the GOP governors of Arizona and Georgia yesterday.  Keep it up.

I sure hope Democrats are fueling this in Georgia for the runoffs. 

The votes from all the challenged states have all been officially certified. 

My Beatles lyrics wall calendar for December has this:

You say goodbye and I say hello!
Hello! Hello!
I don’t know why you say goodbye, I say hello.

From “Hello, Goodbye”

The other Beatles wall calendar has a photo of the four getting off a flight after their 1964 Australia tour.

A few days ago, I read an article in the Chron sports section about Texans wide receiver Will Fuller and how he was going to make it through the season without an injury.  He’s now out for six games because he violated the NFL’s PED policy.

Oh, Canada! I read where the Blue Jays are chasing #SpringerDinger. I sure hope we are still chasing.

Cowards

Associate Judge Beth Arnold is celebrating her birthday today.  Happy Birthday, Judge!

Just so you know, this will be our first president named Joe.  We’ve had multiple Andrew, Franklin, George, James, John and William.  We finally got our first Joe. There has only been one Joe vice president.  Joe Biden.

Nice job for naming an all-female communications leadership team at the White House for 2021, Biden-Harris Transition.

If Donald Trump doesn’t concede and continues his rants, President-Elect Joe Biden should ask him not to attend the inauguration on January 20, 2021.  Pretty simple to me.

When former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton got beat by Trump in 2016, most Democrats I know took the loss painfully.  We got more popular votes, but the electoral college is what matters and we lost.  I didn’t like it, but it was what it was.

Secretary Clinton made the early morning call to Trump to concede and gave her concession speech that afternoon.  I don’t recall her, her campaign and other Democratic stalwarts crying that we had been cheated out of millions of votes.  Instead, it was Trump who said a few million folks without papers had been allowed to vote.

Democrats, like Commentary, bided their time and waited for the 2018 elections and the November 3, 2020 to get our payback and we did.

The GOP needs to own losing 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue fair and square.  To stay your current course is frankly un-American and unpatriotic.

If you know anything about how elections are conducted, you know there are systems in place to prevent massive fraud.  You know that what Trump and Rudy Giuliani are claiming is outright BS. They have been shut down by state and federal courts, recounts and elections administrators in the challenged states.

GOPers need to stand up against Trump and say enough is enough.  You are allowing damage to our country and processes.

This isn’t how we in America wrap up elections. Where is your dignity? Fuc_ing cowards.

Before the election, I took my Dad to see his cardiologist for his check-up.  On the way out, they gave me the paperwork that included the scheduled time and date for his next appointment. When I got back to my place that evening, I looked at the paperwork and his appointment was scheduled for the afternoon of January 20, 2021.  I waited until after the election to reschedule.  You know, the jinx thing.

I was watching “What’s Your Point” yesterday and the 2022 election was brought up.  Rice University political scientist Mark Jones said Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo would face an opponent in the Democratic Primary.  My friend Bill King went a bit further and said that Judge Hidalgo would face an African American or former H-Town Mayor Annise Parker in the primary.  Huh? 

Anyone can plop down the $1,250 filing fee to run.  I am not hearing among Democrats that Judge Hidalgo is doing a lousy job.  I think she is doing a pretty good job.  She’s promoting issues that Democrats like.  What is wrong with rental assistance and supporting small businesses during a pandemic. She would be tough to beat in the Democratic Party Primary if you ask me.

I wonder where Bill and Mark are getting their local Democratic Party intel.

Former Astro Luis Valbuena would have been 35 today.  He died a couple of years ago in a car accident.  He was our third baseman the year we went to the playoffs in 2015.

Not Much Friday

There is not much going on today.

Donald Trump won’t tell the media if he is going to President-Elect Joe Biden’s inauguration.  He has decided but won’t say. I prefer that he does not.  I don’t want Biden riding in the same car with that fella.  Trump and his administration are super spreaders.

I would add “Christmas Canon” by Trans-Siberian Orchestra to the Best Christmas Tunes list.

42 years-ago today, San Francisco Mayor George Moscone and City Supervisor Harvey Milk were murdered at the San Francisco City Hall. 42 years ago.

47 years-ago today, the U.S. Senate voted to confirm Gerald Ford as President Richard Nixon’s Vice President after Spiro Agnew resigned.

A few years ago, someone gave me a nice bottle of wine.  I finally opened it yesterday at dinner.  Silver Oak 2011 cab.  Nice.

It is hard to get worked up over a Texans win and a Cowboys arse kicking since they are both lousy this season.

Ivan Rodriguez is celebrating a birthday today.  The Hall of Fame great played for us for part of the 2009 season and had 8 dingers.  Happy Birthday, Pudge.

No word yet and where #SpringerDinger will land.

Thanksgiving Day

Happy Birthday to my best friend Al Luna today.  I will let him tell you how many birthdays he’s had. I wonder how many times his birthday has fallen on Thanksgiving Day.

A good buddy of mine had the virus and it was a struggle.  She is better now.  I was worried. Thank goodness.

I don’t understand all these folks ignoring CDC guidelines and travelling all over the place.  We deserve what is coming, I guess.

The Thanksgiving Day prayer before dinner today ought to be interesting for sure.

Try to stay safe today.

Happy Thanksgiving Day and enjoy your dinner and go on ahead and overdo it.

I am.

Christmas Tunes

If you are worried about catching COVID-19, today’s probably a day not to go to the grocery store or to Spec’s.

I wonder if Vegas has a line on whether former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has a prominent role in the Biden-Harris administration. The progressives including @AOC are gunning for him.  Some Latinos blame him for not getting immigration reform passed during the first two years of the President Barack Obama administration when he was Chief of Staff and Democrats had control of Congress.  CNN contributor Paul Begala, who is good friend of Emanuel’s was on CNN yesterday saying Emanuel could make a good Transportation Secretary because the Transportation Department really isn’t partisan political.  Begala’s case for Emanuel was pretty weak.

My take is President-Elect Biden doesn’t need this headache.  There is nothing that Emanuel brings that you can’t get from someone else.  He has been a mayor, a member of Congress, and a White House Chief of Staff.  He’s not worth bringing on.

It is Christmas tune season.  “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” is being played.  Did you know that on that tune, not a single woman has a solo?  A few months later, “We Are the World” came out.  It has five women soloists.  Tina Turner, Diana Ross, Dionne Warwick, Cyndi Lauper and Kim Karnes. Now you know.

On the “Today” website, they put out a list of the Top 25 Christmas tunes.  Hey, everyone has an opinion.  Here is the list minus those I removed.

1. Mariah Carey, “All I Want for Christmas Is You”

6. Andy Williams, “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”

7. Brenda Lee, “Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”

8. Bobby Helms, “Jingle Bell Rock”

9. Band Aid, “Do They Know It’s Christmas?” (1984)

10. Frank Sinatra (feat. B. Swanson Quartet), “Let It Snow! Let It Snow! Let It Snow!”

11. John Lennon & Yoko Ono, “Happy Xmas (War Is Over)”

12. Bing Crosby, John Scott Trotter & His Orchestra, Ken Darby Singers, “White Christmas”

13. José Feliciano, “Feliz Navidad”

16. Nat King Cole, “The Christmas Song (Merry Christmas To You)”

17. Paul McCartney, “Wonderful Christmastime”

19. Elvis Presley, “Blue Christmas”

22. Burl Ives, “A Holly Jolly Christmas”

I am not set on the order above.  How can you not have “White Christmas” at number one.” Or Nat King Cole? Or Feliciano?

Here are the ones I removed:

2. Wham! “Last Christmas”

3. Ariana Grande, “Santa Tell Me”

4. Michael Bublé, “It’s Beginning to Look a Lot like Christmas”

5. Justin Bieber, “Mistletoe”

14. Michael Bublé, “Holly Jolly Christmas”

15. Chris Rea, “Driving Home for Christmas”

18. Sam Smith, “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”

20. Kelly Clarkson, “Underneath the Tree”

21. Coldplay, “Christmas Lights”

23. Shakin’ Stevens, “Merry Christmas Everyone”

24. Michael Bublé, “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town”

25. The Ronettes, “Sleigh Ride”

First of all, Commentary is a Christmas tune afficionado.  With all due respect, of the “Today” list, Mariah Carey is the only one who has come out with a Top 25 worthy tune the last couple of decades.

In no particular order, here are tunes that need to be added, in my opinion.  A couple are from within the last couple of decades:

Stevie Nicks, “Silent Night”

Johnny Mathis or Gloria Estevan, “Silver Bells”

Perry Como, “O Holy Night”

John Denver and The Muppets, “Twelve Days of Christmas”

Eartha Kitt, “Santa Baby”

Eydie Gorme Y Trio Los Panchos, “Noche De Paz”

Dean Martin, “Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer”

Bing Crosby and David Bowie, “The Little Drummer Boy (Peace on Earth)”

Bruce Springsteen, “Santa Claus Is Comin’ to Town”

The Carpenters, “Merry Christmas Darling”

Robert Earl Keene, “Merry Christmas From the Family”

Jessalyn Gilsig, “Twas the Night Song”

Faith Hill, “Where Are You Christmas”

The Lennon Sisters, “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus”

John Williams, “Somewhere in My Memory” from the “Home Alone” flick

I am sure I missed some.  I will come back and add some if I did.  As you can see, I am not tied to only having 25 tunes on a Top 25 list. 

The Gilsig tune really wasn’t recorded for distribution.  You can find it on YouTube from the “Angels and Ornaments” Hallmark flick.

Nothing from The Yard today.

Stay safe this Thanksgiving Weekend and wear a mask.

Biden Transition

Donald Trump finally figured out there was no election fraud.  He and his folks have been spending the last two and a half weeks trying to steal the election by kicking African American voters off the tally sheets and the systems and processes in place wouldn’t let him. No election fraud.

My address is pretty much at the tail end of the mail route.  We are the second to the last street to get the mail.  The mail got delivered last night at 7:30 pm.  Can we please fix the post office?

Yes, my pancake mix did arrive.  Thank you.

President-Elect Joe Biden is starting to roll out his Cabinet and other key aides.  They are a diverse and highly qualified bunch. 

Commentary is going to try not to get worked up on who gets picked to key spots.  I will let others do that.

The GSA finally let loose the resources for the transition.  I am really looking forward to the federal government functioning again.

Sigh.  Gov. Greg Abbott put out on something on vaccinations yesterday.  I kind of wish he would get out of the way when it comes to distribution. He will screw it up for sure.

The Chron’s Mike Morris has a story about the theme park the H-Town Mayor opined on a while back.  Here is from Mike’s piece that struck me:

(Mayor Sylvester) Turner spokeswoman Mary Benton said this month that the mayor was in the process of asking people to join his theme park task force when the pandemic arrived and became the administration’s main focus. Still, she said, Turner has not abandoned the goal.

Here is Mike’s article: What happened to Mayor Turner’s plan to open a theme park in Houston? – HoustonChronicle.com.

I thought back to this from the Chron on the H-Town Mayor’s task forces:

“After not seeing some basic recommendations move forward, I stepped away to focus my energy elsewhere. I was done,” said Ginny Goldman, chair of the equity task force and a co-chair of Turner’s 2016 transition team. “I’ve got to say, if asked to join a task force or committee under this administration today, I would certainly turn it down. It’s a terrible use of people’s time right now writing reports that sit on his shelf, rather than bring people together for meaningful action.”

Turner’s critics say his approach to controversial or systemic issues follows a predictable pattern: Appoint a task force, often accompanied by a speech brimming with sweeping progressive language, before passing on most or all of the advisory group’s policy recommendations.

The reports generated by Turner’s task forces typically come months later, when the public has refocused its attention elsewhere. His task force on Confederate statues, appointed shortly after the 2017 white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., took seven months to recommend the removal of Houston’s statues. Nothing happened until June of this year, when Turner ordered them taken down — 17 days after Floyd’s death, which set off widespread removal of Confederate symbols.

Here is the Chron piece on task forces: Critics accuse Turner of using ‘powerless’ task forces to deal with controversies – HoustonChronicle.com.

I am not going to put my money on H-Town getting an amusement park.

Luis Salinas sent me this after my mention of rate of unsolved homicides in H-Town:

The research says: Police scaling back because of protests, 2.1 million guns sold this year and Quarantining loosens our social restraintshttps://www.univision.com/local/houston-kxln/preocupacion-por-incremento-de-tasa-de-homicidios-en-houston-a-que-se-debe-el-alza-video.

Former Astro pitcher Charlie Morton is now with The ATL.

Thanksgiving Week

Commentary started to listen to Christmas tunes on SiriusXM and 99.1 FM.  I am slowly getting off of CNN now that the results are final.  I really don’t give a rat’s arse if the dipsh_t Donald Trump concedes or not.  Se acabó, baby!

Commentary doesn’t agree much with what former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has to say these days.  He called Trump’s legal team a “national embarrassment” yesterday on “This Week.” Hard to disagree with Christie.

I was watching “What’s Your Point” yesterday and the Breitbart fella and the Urban Reform guy both were not ready to say President-Elect Joe Biden.  What a pitiful response from them. I guess both are okay with Trump and the GOP trying to knock African American votes off of the board. Sigh.

This headline came out on the Chron’s website a few days ago:

Houston’s rate of unsolved murders is soaring. Experts say the police department is to blame.

This is part of the hard copy headline in yesterday’s front page:

… experts pin blame on the police department

I tweeted on the headline last week.  Who else are you going to blame the rate of unsolved murders on?

Me? You?

Did I tell you the price of my Chron subscription went up a few weeks ago?

The Chron gave U.S. Sen Ted Cruz the lead headline in today’s hard copy.

Give me a break.

Cruz was deservedly ridiculed nationwide this past weekend because of his dumbarse tweet.  This fella just takes up space.

Did I tell you the price of my Chron subscription went up a few weeks ago?

The Chron does have a frontpage story in the hard copy today about Trump and the RNC and what happens after January 20, 2021.  I hope it gets real messy.

This is the beginning of Thanksgiving Week.  HISD has the week off. Stay safe.

Nothing to report from The Yard today.

Ninth Inning

Happy Birthday, President-Elect Joe Biden!

Gov. Greg Abbott said yesterday we are entering the “ninth inning of our challenge with COVID.” That’s a bad analogy.

When did we have the seventh inning stretch?  They stop selling Saint Arnold at The Yard after the seventh inning.  What’s the score?  We’re getting clobbered.  If this were softball, they would have imposed the mercy rule in the summer.  Too many of our folks got put on the IL.  Do we get to bat in the bottom of the ninth and knock if out of the park for a walk-off? You get the bad picture.

This fella completely bungled the state’s response to the pandemic.  What a coward.  Not a profile in courage.

At least they are admitting it.  Commentary is talking about Donald Trump’s and his crazy lawyers’ strategy on winning the election they just lost.  They want GOP legislatures to overturn election results in states President-Elect Joe Biden won. 

For those trying to say it’s okay because Democrats were doing the same thing in 2000. Shut the f_ck up!  In 2000, everyone had agreed that 49 states and DC had been settled.  We were just trying to make sure all the votes were counted in Florida.

The GOP standing behind the image of a profusely sweating Rudy Giuliani pretty much explains it all these days.

Commentary said this last week:

There were some smaller precincts that voted over 100% according to Harrisvotes.com.  Precinct 830 along Holcombe had 84 voters and they list 57 registered voters for a 147.37% turnout. Precinct 837 in the NRG Park area had a 116.92% turnout with 76 voting and 65 registered voters.  Don’t even ask me to try and figure it out.

I also tweeted out part of it yesterday.  I got this tweet from @gregwythe yesterday:

Two factors: new construction and the timing of the county to submit their count of RVs. These two are small Med Center pcts w new high-rise properties that started leasing in 2020. Both were growing at the time the RV count was officially submitted.

That makes sense.

Greg also sent me the numbers with the new registered voters factored in:

Precinct 830 has 96 registered voters with 84 voting for an 88% turnout.

Precinct 837 has 105 registered voters with 76 voting for a 72% turnout.

I thanked him.

My neighbors down the street really put the rest of us to shame. Commentary is talking about the folks in Woodland Heights and Sawyer Heights.  Those that live in Precincts 3 and 4 voted at a 99% and 91% voter turnout.  My Precinct 57 went 81%.  Not bad at all.

Royko responded to my take yesterday on the FBI investigating the Texas AG who is a GOPer with this:

Sadly, there is a two tiered system at the Dept. of Injustice, infested with Obamanites. They went out of their way to protect Hillary and ignore the Clinton crime family operation. Further, they sat on the Hunter Biden laptop and the China bribes for the “Big Guy.”

They seemingly only go after Republicans, mostly to inflict revenge for slighted Democrats.

Dude.  The FBI was invited to this by half a dozen former top AG aides who are also GOPers.  The top GOP aides in a letter made public raised concerns about the AG’s alleged criminal behavior.  Stop deluding yourself with this deep state BS.

Stuffing won the “Today” bracket deal on Thanksgiving Dinner sides.  I predicted this no brainer.

MLB.com’s  Alyson Footer has a piece on free agents including #SpringerDinger and she asked Tags if the Astros would sign #SpringerDinger and here’s Tags’ response:

No, I don’t. I think there’s a couple of things in play. First, I think the money might get to be too much for the Astros, who are now facing Carlos Correa entering free agency after the ’21 season and some upgrades they’ll need to make in their pitching staff.

Secondly, I’m not so sure he wants to stay in Houston. As you may know, the atmosphere here hasn’t been great for the past year, though a surprising run to within a game of the World Series helped. Still, I could see him wanting to escape Houston and try to distance himself from the sign-stealing scandal. The players who were on the team in ’17 and have gone elsewhere seemed to have had an easier time putting it behind them than those still in Houston.

Here is the entire Footer piece: https://www.mlb.com/news/george-springer-where-will-he-sign.

Oh, well.